Saturday, April 2, 2011

The man at the bar

I wondered why he was staring, from the other side of the well-designed, super-interior-decorated smoking lounge of the smart new hotel that we were having a drink at. It was Friday, I was splashing out and having a cocktail to celebrate the end of a long week - the ominous sounding Strawberry Haze. It was sweet and pink and in a champagne glass. I thought, perhaps, that's what he was looking at. But it wasn't.

He was a round man, a typical-looking South African man. He didn't quite fit in with the bright young things at the next table in their designer clothes and put-on animated expressions. They were talking about a company golf day, cars with big engines, girlfriends who have facials. He wasn't talking about anything, being alone. And staring. I decided to smile.

A minute later he came over and offered us a drink. G mistook him for the waiter, very funny. We fumbled our way out of that and he joined us, apologising for staring. Not some mad, starey, stalker, just a small town man in The City Beneath the Mountain for a conference. Alone, lonely, and sweet-as-can-be.

I can't remember when last a man offered to buy me a drink (oh, except that rugby lout occassion, which hardly counts), or met a stranger in a bar and made friends with him, exchanging numbers because he knows a guy who knows a guy who could be a great help to me. It just doesn't happen all that often in the city. I miss Small Towns and their Small Town People, like me.


Angela said...

That is such a nice story! I like small-town behaviour. deciding to LIKE people instead of being wary.
Makes me feel good.

Shiny, I hope you don`t mind but I stole your idea of writing a letter to THE STUPID PEOPLE IN CHARGE!
Thank you. It helped me.

Miranda said...

Ah how lovely! And how easy to be suspicious - I'm glad you weren't. Its not your style! xx